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SBD/December 5, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies
Spurs-T'Wolves Game In Mexico City Cancelled After Smoke Fills Arena
Published December 5, 2013
SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS: ESPN Deportes' Alvaro Martin said for "everybody here in Mexico who had such high hopes for a sellout crowd and a great game, they're going to have to wait and perhaps watch it on television” (“SportsCenter," ESPN, 12/4). Mexico City Arena Marketing Manager Adrian Perez said that fans "will be reimbursed" (AP, 12/5). ESPN's Tim Legler said the cancellation is a "shame for everybody involved." Legler: "Logistically, it’s a nightmare. It’s a waste of time and a waste of money. ... It’s unfortunate for the people of Mexico City, who wanted to see an NBA game there for the first time in 17 years in this beautiful new arena. Both teams inconvenienced. So it’s a shame for the league. They tried to put on a nice event and it didn’t work out.” Legler added T'Wolves coach Rick Adelman could be the "only guy that might be happy," as last night's game was rescheduled for Target Center (“NBA Tonight,” ESPN2, 12/4).
KEEP GOING ABROAD: ESPN.com's Marc Stein writes despite last night's mishap, he remains "in favor of more regular-season games abroad, not less." Stein: "The NBA happily imports nearly 100 players per season from every corner of the globe. It's only fair that the league tries to export a taste of its game, played at the most meaningful level possible, to as many of those countries as possible ... even if we all understand that commercial motivations play a far bigger role in the NBA’s desire to schedule these trips than any romantic notions of giving back." While there are "too many logistical/financial/player-reluctance obstacles to ever allow for the league’s long-held dream of expanding to Europe," there is no reason the league "can't spare 3-5 of the 1,230 regular-season dates played annually on North American soil for international dispatch on top of the various preseason trips requiring passports every October" (ESPN.com, 12/5).